Stagnant outcomes for students with disabilities has resulted in an era where results-driven accountability is emerging as the driving force for special education leadership. Students who receive special education services significantly lag behind their non-disabled peers in their performance on required statewide, standardized assessments. The achievement gap between students with disabilities and their non-disabled peers is significant and pervasive. School leadership is central to school performance (Waters, Marzano, & McNulty, 2003). Very few researchers have investigated that experience as it relates to high achievement for students with disabilities. Yet, policy in the field has shifted to emphasize outcomes for students with disabilities (Hehir, 2014). As such, it has become critical to examine the experience of those who have successfully helped their schools produce high levels of achievement among students with disabilities. The purpose of the study was to document the lived experiences of school leaders who were helping their population of students with disabilities achieve high outcomes on state required testing. The researcher interviewed principals who had led their schools to achieve exemplary results with students with disabilities according to the AMO data maintained by the FLDOE. Results and discussion are included for each of the research questions along with implications of the findings, recommendations, and suggestions for future research.
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
College of Education and Human Performance
Teaching, Learning and Leadership
Length of Campus-only Access
Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)
Wells, Eric, "The Experiences of School Leaders who Promote Achievement Among Students with Disabilities" (2016). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 5048.